Makita 7.2V Impact Driver Review: Model TD022DSE
As an inline impact driver that converts to a pistol grip, the Makita 7.2V impact driver is a very nice option. Just keep in mind what it's designed for - precision work and tight access.
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My love affair with Makita low-voltage tools continues with a new stick impact driver. You’ll find this Makita 7.2V impact driver with the model number TD022DSE. Now before we dig into the features and specs, allow me to make the case for having a low-power drill or impact driver in your toolkit.
One guy asked me if my Makita 7.2V impact driver is a kitchen drawer tool for homeowners. On the surface, it’s not an uncommon question. While it can serve in that role, this is a Pro-level tool – just not one that you’re going to use during the heavy phases of construction.
Stick drills and impact drivers are useful for getting into tight spaces like cabinets, around wiring, and plumbing. You’ll often see them on factory assembly lines and in repair facilities. The trade-off for the ultra light weight and narrow size is power. With the kind of fasteners you’re typically using with this kind of tool, you don’t need a literal ton of torque, but you do need precise fastening.
There’s an LED light below the collet that’s pretty effective at lighting up the area you’re fastening into. The position does create a shadow over your fastener once you get inside the last inch or so. That might be a slight issue if you’re working with small screws with no light.
The light automatically turns on and off with the forward/reverse switch. You can activate it without turning the bit if you need to. There’s no off switch for the light like Makita’s 7.2V drill has.
On the top of the tool, you’ll find a lockout switch. It’s handy to keep the impact driver from activating during transportation.
If you live in an area where it’s legal to open carry your impact driver, Makita includes a handy holster. All joking aside, it makes for a nice fit on your belt or tool rig, especially if you’re going to be working at height.
Like it’s drill counterpart, the Makita 7.2V impact driver has a straight a pistol grip configuration that switches easily without the need to pop a pin or press a lock switch. The tool is narrow enough to grip in multiple positions on the tool in straight mode.
The pistol grip mode encourages you to shift your hand up a little higher than a standard impact driver, very similar to how you grip a drywall screw gun.
Trigger Forward/Reverse Switch
Your standard trigger mechanism is thrown out in favor of a forward/reverse switch that ties in with the ergonomics of the design. With access on both side (the drill only had buttons on the left), both righties and lefties will be able to use the driver easily.
A key difference between the drill and impact driver is that the switch is variable speed on this model. With the drill, you have two speed modes and a drill chuck to work with. Here, you have a single speed motor with variable speed controls. It’s pretty easy to vary the speed and when I need the most precision, I use my thumb on the left and forefinger on the right to control it from both sides.
The trigger design heavily impacts the Makita 7.2 impact driver in the ergonomics department. You have three basic working positions (and infinite angles in between): up, down, and horizontal. When I’m working up, it’s easiest to grip the driver at the base handle in straight mode. I grip the forward part of the housing in straight mode when working down on fasteners. Horizontal work is where it’s best to switch to the pistol grip if you have space.
Going with those grips keeps your wrist in a very natural and comfortable position along with giving your fingers easy access to the forward/reverse switch.
Weight on an impact driver this size is almost negligible compared to any 12V or 18V model – even Makita’s lightweight ones. At just 1 pound, 4 ounces on our scale with the battery, even a child can manage it easily. With adult supervision, of course.
Makita gives the handle some curve, though it’s not quite as form-fitting to your hand as their standard drills and impact drivers. Rubber overmold increases the comfort level and grip security. There’s some overmold around the upper housing to give the tool some added protection.
Power and Performance
You get 2450 RPM no-load speed and 3000 IPM impact rate which is pretty respectable for a 7.2V impact driver. Torque comes in at 220 inch-pounds, which is obviously well below 12V models. But before anyone throws up their hands screaming that they need more power, remember what this tool is designed for. It’s all about giving you precision and access to tight spaces.
I have a project underway that partly involves the disassembly of a tool. It’s a combination of tough tool plastic and solid metal internal components. As I’m working with it, I’m in awkward positions tight against the tool and around the housing. The Makita 7.2V impact driver is perfect for this application. Its weight and grip design allows me to work comfortably and access everything I need. I can feather the driver on the screws that are attaching plastic and work with more impact muscle on the metal to metal connections.
I’ve used the Makita TD022DSE in some other general tasks, but this one in particular shows off its strengths. That said, there are limitations. If you’re a cabinetmaker, I’d steer you to the drill version of this tool. Fastening to wood and setting the chuck is going to be more helpful than feathering the switch on this. If you’re mainly about fine woodworking products, go for the drill.
This is a more helpful tool when you have metal connections to make – assembly and repair facilities, electricians, HVAC, possibly even some plumbing.
The Bottom Line
As an inline impact driver that converts to a pistol grip, the Makita 7.2V impact driver is a very nice option. Just keep in mind what it’s designed for – precision work and tight access. It’s not going to blow your mind with power, but its impact mechanism will give you an advantage over a similar drill model in metal fastening applications.
$189 isn’t cheap for a 7.2V inline impact driver, but there aren’t a whole lot of choices, either. Keeping in mind that it’s a 2-battery kit with a 3-year warranty to go with the design makes that number a little easier to swallow.
Overall, it’s a handy tool to have and if you ask me if you should buy this one or Makita’s drill model, the answer is yes. Both.
Makita 7.2V Impact Driver Key Features
- Makita-built motor delivers 220 in.lbs. of Max Torque in a compact design
- Variable speed (0-2,450 RPM & 0-3,000 IPM) for a wide range of fastening applications
- Ergonomically located forward/reverse switch for convenient adjustment of rotational speed for precise screw driving
- Operates in straight or pistol grip positions
- Electric brake for maximum productivity
- Built-in L.E.D. light illuminates the work area and flashes when it is time to recharge the battery
- Lock-off switch for user convenience
- Convenient 1/4″ hex chuck for quick bit changes
- Soft grip handle provides increased comfort on the job
- Weighs only 1.2 lbs. with battery for reduced operator fatigue
- Can also be used as a hand-driven screwdriver to securely fasten screws to a proper torque
- Makita 7.2V Lithium-Ion batteries provide longer run time and lower self-discharge
- Compact and ergonomic design at only 11-1/8″ (straight) and 8-15/16″ (pistol)
Makita 7.2V Impact Driver Specifications
- Model: Makita TD022DSE
- Power Source: Makita 7.2V battery
- Chuck: 1/4″ hex
- No Load Speed: 0 – 2450 RPM
- Impact Rate: 0 – 3000 IPM
- Max Torque: 220 in. lbs.
- Length: 11-1/8″ (straight), 8-15/16″ (pistol)
- Weight: with battery
- Warranty: 3 years
- Price: $189 (2-battery kit)